Post # 1
My husband’s brother and I had a falling out a year and a half ago. My husband has not really been in touch with his brother for most of this time. There was a brief period after the initial falling-out where my husband was asking his brother to at least talk to me and apologize, but he gave up on that shortly.
My husband is going down this combat PTSD rabbit hole of alcoholism and anger. He had me worried enough to contact, because they used to talk a lot. It started out pleasant. I sent him a Facebook message. “Hey, it’s been a while. How’s it going? We need to talk about your brother. I’m concerned about him.” “Hey what’s going on with him?”
I thought that maybe the man could put aside his butthurt for just a moment and reach out to his brother and tell him that despite their differences, he’s still there for him. But that’s giving him too much credit, because he just wanted to harp on about how I’m a bad influence on his brother and he hopes I never darken their doorstep again. Then he blocked me on Facebook. His immaturity would be really funny if not for the gravity of the situation.
I have pleasant but distant relationships with his mother and sister, as in I don’t talk to them or see them much.
I could describe the initial falling-out. It’s really dumb. I don’t think it’s important anymore, though. I get that my brother-in-law despises me (I don’t like him either), but he could at least pretend he gives a crap about his brother.
Post # 2
It’s unfortunate, but you can’t make someone care about someone else. Given your BIL’s lack of maturity, do you really think he’d be a good influence on your husband and be able to help him with this tough situation? By what I read, it sounds like your BIL is just a toxic waste and wouldn’t be someone I, eprsonally, would want helping out. I understanding believing family should stick together, but sometimes its best if they just don’t talk. They have to want to, and it doesn’t sound like your BIL does.
Help your husband any way you can, and just worry about what you can do to improve his situation. I wish your husband the best. Perhaps one day your BIL will wise up.
Post # 3
My BIL and I have our differences, but it has never come between my sister and I. So, I understand being frustrated with family.
It’s hard to weigh in, though– seems like there’s more to the story for him to immediately block you and go off like that.
Post # 4
Mrs_Amanda: It wasn’t even a serious falling-out a year and half ago.
My husband’s brother has an ex-wife. Together, they had a daughter. From what I understand, their divorce was a very bitter one. He’s still not over it. He may be over her, but he’s not over how traumatic this divorce process had been–especially since this woman apparently lied to the courts in order to gain full custody of their child. When he and his lawyer proved that she lied, the courts upheld the decision in favor of the mother (as they often do).
What does this have to do with me? Nothing. All of this happened years before I came into the picture. I met my brother-in-law once. It was shortly after my husband was released from the hospital. Although we had naught in common, we made pleasant smalltalk over dinner and my husband kept the conversation going. Towards the end, my brother-in-law told me the story about his evil ex-wife.
Two days later, my husband got a phone call from his brother, who just wanted to comaplain about me because I look “exactly” like his ex-wife. Therefore, I must be a treacherous viper like she was, right? …According to my brother-in-law, I must be. I should have known something was up because of how passionately angry he got when he was talking about his ex-wife. Oh, and he also thought I was obsessed with sex because tarantulas came up in the conversation and I made a comment about their curious mating habits (the female trying to eat the male after they’re done). He also feels somehow betrayed that my husband and I eloped (hence why I was meeting my brother-in-law for the first time after the wedding.)
All of this was happening at a tipping point. Prior to this, whenever my husband and I would have an argument or a disagreement, who would he call up to vent about it? His brother. So it’s no wonder the guy went into the meeting with an already negative opinion. He’s too immature to distinguish between a vent and a real problem.
Post # 5
megz06: Agreed. I mistakenly thought he would have grown up a little by now, at least enough to have let go of petty old grudges.
One of two things is happening here:
a.) Misdirected anger. He does care, and he is upset by the situation, but he’s shooting the proverbial messenger. Me.
b.) He still sees me as the catalyst of his distance from his brother, and he is still bitter that his brother “took my side”.
Either way, I don’t want to deal with him.
Post # 6
Sounds like it’s far more important to focus on your husband’s PTSD. Is he currently attending a military sponsored counselling programme? If I remember correctly then he was preparing to leave the army, so he should be offered a leaver’s course.
Not exactly sure how it works in the US, but full time soldiers here get a package to prepare them for civilian life here, which involves managing finances etc, learning a trade, how to apply for jobs, and a mental health assesment.
It could also be that he is responding to the newfound lack of structure in his life by drinking… that’s common too.
Don’t know if I can offer advice or not, but I was involved with the army in some small capacity or other for many years. They should offer some sort of help in this case…
Post # 7
- Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House
Honestly, this guy doesn’t even sound like he’s in a position to be a good influence on your husband.
Post # 8
Rachel631: He got out of the military March 2013, actually only a few weeks after the initial falling-ouot with his brother.
The Veteran’s Association has been marginally helpful. It doesn’t help that we’ve been moving around a lot, so he’s been unable to build a relationship with a therapist for more than a few months.
Post # 9
Wow, we’re in a very similar situation, except BIL is still married and is the one with PTSD. It’s sad that your BIL is acting the way he is but it might just be best if you didn’t reach out to him. If he doesn’t reach out to his brother, that’s on him. I feel bad for your husband but I don’t think the stress from his brother is worth it. We (my MIL, DH and myself) were blocked by BIL, his wife and his MIL on facebook and it really aggravated us in the beginning, like what kind of adults are they, playing games like blocking people on FB just because they are butthurt about something. Especially since we never really had a relationship on FB…blocking us was just to show how mad they were. After two months, it is seriously such a relief to all of us that we don’t have that tension anymore. MIL had to go to counseling but she already feels better about what happened.
My advice is to try not to give BIL too much attention. Focus on yourselves and don’t let him get to you.
Post # 10
boogiewoogies: I had blocked my BIL on Facebook after the initial falling-out between myself and him, because he was pestering me in messages. I unblocked him just this morning to let him know what’s going on.
I’m probably giving this parasite way more thought than he deserves, but I think he reacted that way because he sees me as the catalyst of the rift between himself and his brother (my husband). And he feels betrayed that his brother ultimately “sided with me” rather than with him, so he’s not interested in lending any help his brother’s way.
Whatever. I tried to bury the hatchet.
Post # 11
CorvusCorax: Hope things improve for you soon. It may well help once your other half gets into a routine with his new job etc. Army guys thrive on routine because it makes everything make sense…
Post # 12
CorvusCorax: I don’t know what messages he sent after comparing you to his ex wife. So I don’t know if they were insults or him trying to talk to you. So then you block him. Is it possible that the reason he didn’t care about what you had to say is this? maybe in his mind he tried talking to you and you blocked him so of course when you decide to come around after this long and try to talk to him it’s a normal response to think f her and block you. I’m not saying his thoughts were right but I am going to give him this- you called him immature for blocking you but that was your initial response to do the same thing. Also, another thing to consider his brother was having a hard time after the divorce. It sounds like all this was still bothering him some time later but I can imagine it hurt when he felt like he was going through this stuff and your husband decided to stop speaking with him. i don’t think it’s right but I could see why he would feel like your husband wasn’t there for him and he didn’t need to help your husband now. If you are serious about wanting to bury the hatchet leave him unblocked and see if he will come around.
Post # 13
Sara1923: He had been harassing me through Facebook messages, saying things like, “Why did you even come out to California in the first place? I told my brother I wanted to hang out with him alone. I haven’t seen him in over a year and your just saw him last month!”
I felt I didn’t have to deal with that level of immaturity, so I blocked him. He wasn’t trying to talk to me. He was pointlessly yelling at me through fb about something really stupid that I had no control over. It’s not my fault that my husband wanted to see me as well and his brother didn’t get his way.
That’s another reason he didn’t like me. Because I was there. Because I flew to California to see my husband after he spent two weeks in a military hospital. His brother happened to be in the area that same weekend. My husband thought it would be the perfect opportunity for us to meet. His brother saw me as an intrusion on their catch-up time.